In September 2016 an expected 1000 delegates from the international UNESCO Geopark family will descend on Torbay from the one hundred and twenty UNESCO Global Geoparks in thirty-three countries around the world.

The conference will start with an opening ceremony that could star YOU!

Join local musicians and players from the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (BSO) to open the conference and welcome international visitors and VIPs to Torbay.

Today, the production team has launched their call for performers to join the cast. Artistic Director, Mark Laville, said: "We are looking for Performers, Musicians, Singers, Choirs, Rappers, Dancers and Actors - aged 8-80!

"Over the past few months a group of local young composers have been working with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and talented young/local musician’s writing the GeoOpera – which tells the story of the planet (all 6 billion years of it) now we need a cast to bring this incredible story to life."

Anyone and everyone interested is invited to come to the Palace Theatre Paignton on Wednesday 1 June at 6pm to find out more from Artistic Director Mark Laville, BSO Devon Associate and GeoOpera Musical Director, Hugh Nankivell, and the rest of the creative team.

If you want to find out more about the GeoOpera then head for its Facebook page:

Melanie Border, Coordinator English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark, said: "The English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark is known across the globe for its creative and innovative approach to working with its community. The opening ceremony will only reinforce this reputation and I for one can’t wait to see it."

Anyone seeking more information can contact Meg or Hugh or find the project at

Notes to editors
The GeoOpera is a partnership project funded by Arts Council England and supported by Torbay Council, TDA, the English Riviera Global Geopark, Barbican Theatre Plymouth, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Plymouth University, Doorstep Arts, South Devon College and Stiltskin Arts and Theatre Company.

The English Riviera Global Geopark successfully bid for the 7th International The English Riviera Global Geopark successfully bid for the 7th International Conference on Global Geoparks with the support of Torbay Council, TDA, Plymouth University, Exeter University, The Geological Society, British Geological Survey, English Geodiversity Forum, Natural England, Arts Council England, Natural History Museum and Flybe.

The conference takes place every two years and has previously been staged in China (2004) Northern Ireland (2006) Germany (2008) Malaysia (2010) Japan (2012) and Canada (2014.) 2016 will be the first occasion that the conference takes place in Great Britain.

If editors chose to run the story in print or online – PLEASE can you include the links for interested people to find oput more.

In print


The GeoOpera is just one of the cultural strands of the conference. All of the cultural strands are being evaluated by an independent evaluator. The evaluator is focusing on looking at how the GeoOpera supports the main conference them of ‘Health and Well Being through Active and Cultural Engagement’. The interim findings will be revealed at the conference, the main report will be published in November 2016. 

A creative team are running GeoOpera workshops and engaging with young people in Torbay schools.

We have an image of the Geopark composers which can be used for copy and should be credited to @doorstep_arts

The GeoOpera score and an educational learning pack will be freely available after the conference.

For more information about the conference please contact conference director David Randall. or visit the conference website

To find out more regarding the opening ceremony and images of the GeoOpera Production team please contact Executive Producer Mischa Eligoloff

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